30 years on from the Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody

Thursday 15 April 2021

Today marks 30 years since the Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody. We pay our respects to the 474 First Nations people who have died in custody over the past three decades since the commissioners handed down their reports.

A CAEPR Working Paper published today assesses the frequently repeated claim that 78% of the 339 recommendations have been fully or mostly implemented, a figure that is based on a 2018 report produced for the then Minister for Indigenous Australians by Deloitte Access Economics.

The CAEPR paper argues that thirty years since the Royal Commission into Aboriginal Deaths in Custody, the over-incarceration of First Nations people in penal institutions and the numbers of First Nations deaths in penal custody are at unprecedented levels. First Nations deaths in custody continue to rise, including in circumstances of institutional disregard for their lives.

The paper argues that the scope and methodology of the Deloitte review misrepresents governments’ responses to RCIADIC, and has the potential to misinform policy and practice responses to Aboriginal deaths in custody.

The paper can be read on the CAEPR website: https://caepr.cass.anu.edu.au/research/publications/30-years-royal-commission-aboriginal-deaths-custody-recommendations-remain

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Updated:  4 November 2022/Responsible Officer:  CASS Marketing & Communications/Page Contact:  CASS Marketing & Communications